If you are thinking of going to work on a cruise ship, you should do some research on what happens if there is a crime on the ship.
Some people actually believe that cruise ships do not come under jurisdiction when they are actually out at sea. This means that they believe that there are no laws and this is why they wait until the ship is at sea before they commit their crime.
When ships are docked on land, they will fall under the jurisdiction of that country. Sometimes the countries jurisdiction will last until the ships are a few miles out at sea. This means that the ship and all the crewmembers and passengers will have to obey that countries law.
Once the ship is out at sea, then the ship is protected under US Federal Law. They are not just lawless floating vessels that are a playground for criminals. They have legal protection and if anyone breaks those laws, they are liable to be prosecuted in America.
Security on the ship
Whilst there is no force of law on board the ship, there will be a security team of some sort that have extensive training and they are able to detain persons if a crime is committed. Sometimes these officers will carry self-defense weapons.
If a crime if committed, they will be the team that investigates the crime until a police force can gain access to the ship. If a serious crime is committed, the ship might have to dock immediately and it will remain docked until evidence has been taken and any suspects have been removed from the ship. This might mean that the ship is delayed and the destinations are affected.
What if you are the victim?
If you are the victim of crime, you should report it immediately. If you don’t know if it is serious or not, you should report it to your supervisor and they will make the decision on whether or not to contact security.
The ship owners have the responsibility to keep all members of staff and passengers safe. If you are a victim of crime, then they can be held accountable because they have not done their job.
Therefore, you are well within your rights to contact legal advice straight away. You might be considered for compensation for pain and suffering, loss of earnings.
You might be entitled for compensation if you are the victim of a crime of a sexual nature or a violent crime. This is because as a member of staff, you are protected under employment laws as well as federal laws.
Reported to you?
If there has been a crime and it is reported to you, and you are not the victim, you should make sure that you follow any rules that you are supposed to follow for reporting crime. You should have learnt how to do this in your training.
If you have to report to your superior first, then you should do that immediately. There will probably be a report to complete and then the security team will step in and make sure that there are no more instances of crime.
They will then contact the correct force of law when they have docked or if the crime is serious, they will contact the police immediately.
You must follow ship procedure for crime because if you don’t and something goes wrong, you might find yourself named on a legal case for compensation from the cruise ship company.